The Secret Desire: The Key to Next Level Marketing

First, we should start with a scenario to fully understand how the Secret Desire can be the difference between success and failure for your marketing.

You come up with an offer that you know is a good idea because it helps get people what they want. So you create the offer and then you spend some time on the marketing.

You create posts on social media and it seems like everything is going well.

When you finally launch the offer the reception is lukewarm at best. Not as many people bought as you had hoped even though it felt like everyone was on board.

There are many different things that could’ve happened, but the surprising this is that you see other offers that are kind of similar selling like crazy. Your offer is better (you believe), offers more, and in general feels more aligned with what people need.

So what’s the problem?

Chances are you missing out on the Secret Desire of the audience.

We Are Animals

You have to accept that we are animals. We act on emotions/feelings. It’s great to think that we are logical, but everything that we do starts with a feeling.

It could be small or it could be large. It doesn’t matter. The feeling is what dictates what we do next.

This is why sales pages that speak on nothing but the features of an offer fall flat. Nobody cares that your program is 10 hours long or that your book is 179 pages.

That’s why marketers tell you that you need to touch upon the benefits, but even those only go so far.

  • Make more money
  • Lose more weight
  • Have more sex

These are all things people can promise.

This is why those that find success often do so by tapping into the secret desires of individuals.

Do You Want Passive Income or Security?

Let’s say I was trying to sell you on an offer that showed you how to generate passive income. You’ll say that you want is passive income so I have to make it obvious that’s what the offer will help you achieve.

But my messaging (text, video, images, etc) has to portray security because that’s what passive income brings. People that want passive income are looking for security.

Knowing they’ll have money coming in every single month.

The better I can convey that in my messaging, the easier it is to get people to buy because it taps into that Secret Desire.

This is why is it can be so hard for you to understand why some people fall for some types of marketing. You might think that the people that pose in rented private planes and expensive cars are wasting their time because nobody would fall for it.

But many people fall for it. Okay, “fall” is the wrong term because that isn’t fair to these people.

It’s hard to escape your own desires and the audience that buys from these people have a Secret Desire to attain status. They see the videos and images and they see a way to achieve status so why wouldn’t they buy?

Why MLMs Succeed

Everyone knows about multi-level marketing and pyramid schemes. They are not a secret and yet new ones pop up every year and millions of people go for them.


Secret Desires.

It’s how we are able to convince ourselves that the bad thing isn’t bad anymore because it helps us get what we truly want.

With an MLMs that is usually success.

I’ve been like this my whole life so this is my opportunity to be successful.

But you can’t say that directly in your marketing because it’s not something that people can consciously acknowledge. So what do the MLM people do? They show it in other ways.

  • I was able to go on a 4-week vacation
  • My husband no longer has to work
  • I put $60,000 in my kids’ college funds

To you it might be silly, but to those people that go for it, it makes perfect sense.

And here’s the kicker. You probably have a Secret Desire for success just like them, but you require a different trigger to activate it.

For you maybe it’s the person that can show you how to write a New York Times bestseller. There are people that will look at that and roll their eyes because that doesn’t trigger their Secret Desire.

Great Marketing Is Polarizing

Have you noticed that when something becomes really successful on social media there is always a counter to it? A large group of people will rise up and start to put down the new popular thing.

That’s a good sign that the marketing is working.

Take the trend of faceless marketing as an example. There is a group of people that love it and a group of people that hate it.

Let’s focus on the group that loves it.

Why do they jump on it? They see how it can bring them success (Secret Desire) while also helping them remove the fear of being on camera.

People buy by feelings.

  • greed
  • fear
  • anger
  • envy
  • embarrassment
  • belonging
  • guilt
  • indequacy
  • escape
  • lust

If you’re looking at this list and the hairs on your neck are standing up, it’s probably because you believe that you don’t do this kind of marketing, but for those who are successful in building a business they all do in some way.

That doesn’t mean you’re evil. Some marketers definitely take this stuff too far and manipulate people for the sole purpose of making money, but it’s important to understand something.

If you’re going to help people then you need to understand what feelings are driving their decisions.

How to Find the Secret Desire of Your Audience

To make it easier let’s list some things out.

People want to gain:

  • health
  • time
  • money
  • popularity
  • improved appearance
  • comfort
  • leisure
  • pride of accomplishment
  • advancement
  • increase enjoyment
  • self-confidence
  • personal prestige

People want to be:

  • good parents
  • sociable, hospitable
  • up-to-date
  • creative
  • proud of their possessions
  • influential over others
  • gregarious
  • efficient
  • “first” in things
  • recognized as authorities

People want to do:

  • express their personalities
  • resist domination by others
  • satisfy their curiosity
  • emulate the admirable
  • appreciate beauty
  • acquire or collect things
  • win other’s affections
  • improve themselves generally

People want to save:

  • time
  • money
  • work discomfort
  • worry
  • doubts
  • risks
  • personal embarrassment

Now think about all of the marketing that you’ve seen in the past couple of weeks. You almost see none of these things explicitly mentioned (money of course always gets mentioned but that’s the exception, not the rule).

This is why storytelling is hyper-effective in marketing and why most educational content falls flat over time.

With a story you can weave in a lot of the things in these lists without putting a spotlight on them. When content is strictly educational it removes the feelings and therefore doesn’t have the desired effect that we want.

My husband left us. We were all alone. Things got so bad that we had to stay at a homeless shelter for a couple of weeks.

But I never gave up. 

Eventually, I was able to sell some copies of the book that I had written years ago. And then I sold some more.

One day I was looking at my emails and realized that for two weeks straight I had sold over 10 copies of my book each day.

And that's been the case for the past two years.

We are now in a house that I bought surrounded by people who love us. And every day I still feel the exact same excitement I did on that first day when I open up computer to check my email.

I’m not going to pretend that was the best story in the world, but you can see how it taps into different secret desires without directly calling them out.

Some people will look at that story and wonder how anyone could “fall” for it while others will look at the story and scream about how it mirrors their feelings.

The people finding success in today’s world are those who continue to tap into the Secret Desires of their audience. The more you do it, the more there will be a divide between the people who feel aligned with you and those on the outside who just don’t get it.

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No silly costume required but it could help grab some attention. Which is never a bad thing.